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PRIME Time: Managing online conversations

Professional Remodeler and members of the PRIME Group have partnered to bring you business advice on the latest issues facing remodelers.

August 03, 2012
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Question of the Month: “What steps have you taken to make ‘online conversation’ work on your company’s behalf?”

Digital Content Marketing

We’ve been seeing an increasing number of inquiries coming via the website and from Internet searches, and have witnessed a drop-off in traditional lead sources, including print and radio ads. As a result I made a strategic decision to hire a marketing manager who can bring us quickly into the digital world. We are now refocusing our efforts so that a significantly larger portion of our marketing budget goes toward Internet marketing, content development, and converting first time Web and social media visitors to engaged members of our “virtual community,” and ultimately leads.

Tom Kelly

Neil Kelly Co.

Portland, Ore.




Online Reviews Boost Business

We take online reviews very seriously in our company and have seen the power they have to bring new customers into our camp. We have found that reviews not only generate interest, they can help convert prospective customers into sales. Our print materials encourage people to read our reviews on Google, Angie’s List, and the like.  We urge our design and production staff to ask happy customers to review us online in the same manner we would have asked for a letter five or more years ago. Members of our design team even request recommendations from past customers on LinkedIn to further bolster our online reputation. Good reviews are also critical to offset some negative ones that we know are not deserved but cannot be avoided, and we continuously remind design and production staff to be mindful that any customer can post anything at any time.

Andy Wells, President

Normandy Design Build Remodeling

Hinsdale, Ill.




Using Conversation to ‘Nurture’ Leads

Creating online conversation is critical to online success, so it can’t be left to chance. At Custom Design & Construction, we have deployed an integrated social media and website strategy to convert relevant website traffic into leads with which we can have an ongoing conversation as we nurture them until they are ready to buy. We start with a strong website that is linked to our social channels and our blog, all optimized for the key search terms we would like to be found for. Traffic is converted into leads through relevant offers, like a free book, that require an exchange of contact information. The lead is then nurtured through an automated e-mail campaign (of up to two years in length) that continues to provide the prospect with helpful links and information as they go through the decision making process. This helps position us as a “trusted advisor” and keep us “top-of-mind.”

Bill Simone

Custom Design & Construction

El Segundo, Calif.




Educating Consumers About Remodeling

We’re active on Facebook and our strategy is to provide useful information to our ‘fans.’ We share home maintenance tips, ideas on new products, and links to our blog where we can get into more depth on topics such as how to select a contractor, the components of a legal contract, or how to avoid the hidden cost of poor quality. We also respond to comments on Angie’s List, expressing appreciation for the good things our customers say and acknowledging the more challenging thoughts expressed. Our current campaign, “The Most Trusted Marriage in Remodeling,” humanizes our company and generates a positive response from potential customers.

Jay Cipriani

Cipriani Remodeling Solutions

Woodbury, N.J.






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